Heading home from work in an uber a few minutes to 10pm. Sadly a 12+ hour workday isn’t unusual, and the 20 minute ride home is typically my first taste of freedom all day.
My life over the past decade has been mostly a blur of work, with a short “break” for a one year MBA. I can’t say I totally regret the way I spent my 20s – it has given me options to take care of myself, and now my family. But I am quite mindful of all the events, festivals and simple time with friends I’ve missed out on because I was in the office.
My little guy or girl could be here anytime now. While the due date is August 1st, the healthy, normal window is plus or minus two weeks of that. So it could be tomorrow. Or tonight! Crazy. It still doesn’t feel real.
One of the interesting and totally unexpected side effects of expecting a child is the way it encourages you to reflect on your own life. Part of it is a realization that your youth is now, without a question, 100% over.
But another big part of it is that you start to talk to your child (I keep saying child because we don’t know if it’s a girl or boy). And you start to think about what wishes and dreams you have for them.
I keep saying (in my head, to my unborn child) “forget money – do whatever makes you happy” and “travel and adventure more while you still can.” And that process is forcing me to reflect on my life. And ask some real tough questions. If I am saying that to my child… is it not fair to assume that my parents wish the same for me?
I’ve heard that one of the side effects of being a father is that it makes you a better person – more empathetic, supportive, etc. I’m learning that it might also make you a better person by forcing you to reflect more on your life, and where you need to make changes to better align with your values.